Our own Klebold– or not?

The Albemarle Circuit Court, lately keeping a tight hold on the records of the juvenile defendants in the alleged conspiracy-to-blow-up-high-schools cases, has released documents containing emails, instant messages, and MySpace pages of the so-called "ringleader," a troubled teen who attended Western Albemarle High School before his January 31 arrest.

There's idolizing of kings of mayhem, particularly Columbine killers Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris, whom the boy calls "heroes" on his MySpace profile. Yet for an alleged conspiracy case, there's precious little written evidence of conspiracy, i.e. collusion between two or more individuals to commit some sort of crime.

In the longest missive from the teen, he admits to a "fixation with iconic mass-murderers," yet he specifically distances himself from them– even if his reason includes whining that "arbitrary laws" prevent him from killing people.

"I'm a misanthrope," he declares. "We would be better off if we lived like the native americans and africans did in ancient and middle-aged times."

And while he perversely calls April 20, 1999– the date of Columbine, the worst school massacre in American history– the "best present" ever given to him, he specifically says he wouldn't do such a thing. "There's no point in doing anything like that," he writes. "All it does is reharshen zero-tolerance regulation and elicit oppression [of] free speech."

His logic improves a paragraph later when he insists that killing should occur only when it's justified– "I.e., I kill someone because they raped my daughter. That would be something I consider proper."

The lad seems fond of quizzes, and he posted links to an internet Serial Killer Quiz which asks, "Which school shooter are you?" "Which gun is perfect for you?" and "Are you psychotic?"

The boy's Instant Messaging screen name "Loki420diefor" seems to fit with the themes of his writings. In the 1999 film Dogma, Loki is the name of a fallen angel, played by Matt Damon, who commits what he sees as justified killings. Loki is also the name of a mythological Norse giant who makes mischief, murder, and fire.

In instant messages from January 30 with a young adult named Matt Smith, who alerted the boy's family, the teen hints that the FBI will be investigating Smith in three months. When Smith asks if he still plans "to shoot up the school," the boy refers cryptically to the "seventh anniversary," presumably of Columbine and the date of the teen's 17th birthday.

In the lengthy MySpace message, the boy rails against "trendy youth-Christians," declares God a "psychologically comforting archetype," and also blasts W.A.S.P.s, gluttons and corporate raiders. He says he likes smoking marijuana and listening to Goth bands– including Charlottesville's own Bella Morte.

The material paints a picture of a disturbed, possibly suicidal youth who calls himself "incontrovertibly crazy." What it seems thin on is proof of an actual conspiracy beyond the fantasies of the teen, whom one defense lawyer has called a "Columbine wannabe."

The teen, who has been in detention for seven months, offered an Alford plea to the conspiracy charges on August 31. He will remain under a doctor's care, get treatment in a residential facility in Tennessee, and be on probation at least until he's 18. If he complies with the terms of the deferred disposition, the charges will be reduced to making electronic threats, and the defendant may request they be dropped– although the prosecution notes it does not agree with dropping the charges at this time.

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16 comments

People plead guilty all the time to Alford plea. It is a GUILTY plea,jLOr.The whole point of the juvenile justice system is to provide the juvenile with a chance to rehabilitate while protecting the public. As Gail may know, parents are not required by law to be present during questioning by the cops. If people don't like the law, then they should have the legislature change it.

As for the Not Guilty (not INNOCENT) finding by the jury, that is their option/right. But it does not negate the fact that the kid was found guilty by a judge.

People don't have to meet in person, there appears to be contact via MY SPACE, instant messaging and email (but I'm
not totally sure about that)

I hope you'll post the documents in their entirety on your site.

If you post that stuff on the internet, all your friends will be arrested.

Waldo has an agenda (along with Coy Barefoot) and now looks like an idiot that the real details are coming out. Mea Cupla, Waldo ?

You mean the real details that there never was a conspiracy? And so why is it that Camblos charged 4 kids with conspiracy? No need for a mea culpa from Waldo or anyone else, if you ask me. Camblos has been an idiot for years. Exposing that is a public service.

Waldo and Coy have an agenda??!! Robert, you have not been paying close attention to the details of this case since last winter.
Thank goodness that the disturbed former WAHS student is finally getting the help he needs. How sad that it should have taken many months, and damaged the lives of 3 other kids and their families to get to this point.

Wrong,wrong,wrong....what the details show are that these kids did indeed threaten to hurt others at school. Why aren't you discussing the guilty plea by the ringleader and guilty verdicts by the judges ? Because it doesn't fit into the agenda that Waldo and Coy have to beat up on Camblos and the cops.

Waldo has an agenda to beat up cops? Can we make a docudrama about that?

Let's just hope the former WAHS student's residential treatment center in Tennessee isn't owned by Psychiatric Solutions, owner of Whisper Ridge and other adolescent treatment facilities across the country that are violating residents rights in every conceivable way. Because he won't get much "help" in a Psychiatric Solutions owned facility. And why couldn't he be treated on an outpatient basis instead of shipped away from family and friends?

The details show that there was NO ringleader except in the story told by authorities. There were two middle school kids who had never even met the WAHS student. There was an acquaintance between the AHS student and the WAHS student because the AHS kid was trying to befriend another kid who he perceived to be lonely and troubled. The WAHS kid knew that the AHS family owned guns, as did everyone else in this community who had been reading the news the last few years. The AHS kid knew one of the middle school kids and talked to him about the WAHS kid. This middle school kid in turn talked to one of his friends at Jouett- the kid just found INNOCENT by a jury. At least two of these kids were found guilty by the juvenile court judge on the basis of what they said when talking voluntarily to the police, when separated from their parents by the police and denied lawers requested by their parents.
I do not imagine that any of these teenage boys were angels and they probably had personality conflicts with schoolmates, as do most kids, but that is a long way from "conspiracy to commit murder" which is what they were charged with.

Here, here Gail. Not only that, but an Alford plea to the crime proves absolutely nothing, except that the kid is avoiding the risk of a trial. Who wouldn't do that? How strong could Camblos' case be if he would accept an Alford plea, and agreeing to allow the court to dismiss everything if he completes some counseling? As for the one who pled guilty in juvenile court and didn't appeal -- well, he had a do-nothing lawyer. Another unfortunate aspect of our indigent criminal justice system.

A Not Guilty in an appeal is supposed to negate a previous guilty plea. The day the appeal is filed the process is supposed to start anew. However, Robert does make clear that the damage done to this child's reputation has not been completely removed by the appeal. It seems to me that this family would be very justified in pursuing a lawsuit as the ongoing harm to this kid is not going away-

Actually, an appeal does does not negate a previous guilty plea or finding. The lower court's ruling stands
until changed by a different ruling in a higher court.

If I remember correctly,it was the media that got the appeals process open. The government never released the
names of the juveniles, that was the media's role.

I still believe that Waldo and Coy have their own agenda by disinformation. Remember, 4 out of 4 of the kids either
pled or were found guilty in juvenile court. All the whining in the world won 't change that fact.

Only one juvenile court conviction held up in the light of day.... probably only because that family didn't have the resources to appeal. Juvenile court is not a court of record and the verdict evaporates immediately upon appeal to a court of record.

The jury of our peers saw no evidence of conspiracy. The boy who prosecutors took all the way to trial was found innocent. Conspiracy charges against another boy were dropped and prosecutors did not take him to trial. Another boy had to plead guilty in order to begin the treatment that had been denied him for over half a year.

After made-up gag orders, a secret trial, "behind closed door" resolutions, and threats against the freedom of the press, you accuse the media of a disinformation agenda. Wow.

Who released the names of the kids involved ? the media

Who published pictures of some of the juveniles ? the media

Who can't explain to the public that juvenile cases are usually held
"in camera" and not "secret" at the discretion of the judge ? the media

Who intentionally misled the public on the legal requirement (there is none)
of an attorney with a juvenile during interviews ? The media

Current conviction score 3/4

The facts speak for themselves.

All the local media I have seen have been very clear that the police had the legal right to question minors without a lawyer even when parents were urgently asking that their children have legal representation. That the police had the legal right to proceed as they did makes it neither right or appropiate. In the future parents should not "consent" to police interviews with unaccompanied minors by taking their children to the police station, when asked to do so. The parents in this community need to let Rob Bell and David Toscano know that we believe there is a need to change this law as soon as possible. The media has not intentionally misled or misinformed the community on this issue.
The Daily Progress did release the names and photos of two of these kids. However, Waldo, The Hook, and Coy Barefoot have been very careful not to do so.
Indeed the facts, as listed in Family Guy's post, and many other places in the media do speak for themselves. A serious miscarriage of justice has occurred and three families have been greatly damaged for a conspiracy which never existed. And it has taken many months to get help for the oldest boy who obviously has mental health problems.